Teacher Tech blog with Alice Keeler

Paperless Is Not a Pedagogy

Alice Keeler

Control F: Replace the Extra Space

Two spaces after the period is a relic from the age of typewriters. The norm when using a computer is to only put one space after the period. Here is how to find and replace the two spaces with just one.
Control F: Replace the Extra Space

Two spaces are for typewriters. If we are not using typewriters then two spaces are outdated and obsolete. We are educators, should we be teaching kids outdated and obsolete practices just because we still do them? I’m 41, I owned a typewriter and learned to put 2 spaces after the period. I unlearned it. It was surprisingly easier than I thought. Even if it’s super hard, should we not always be challenging ourselves in order to be on the cutting edge of what our student’s need?

One Space After the Period

In addition to using Control F to find and replace 2 spaces after the period with one space, try my Add-on for Google Docs. Remove Blanks Lines by Alice Keeler helps you with quickly fixing formatting. One of the options in the Extensions menu is to have only one space after the period.

Find and Replace

While I no longer accidentally put 2 spaces after the period I certainly had a period of time where I had an extra space somewhere in my writing. Let’s call it unfun to find those. Actually, wait… it is super fun! Keyboard shortcuts to the rescue!

Control F

Control F (Command F on a Mac) is find. You can find all the double spaces in your document. Try Control F to find all the space space in your document.
Control F


I know what you’re thinking… you have to be kidding me, even with finding all the double spaces how tedious to delete that extra space manually. No worries, tech will do that for you!

Notice in this document there are 15 double spaces in the document.
15 double spaces

In a Google Doc, look for the 3 dots in the find box to replace the found text.
Replace with the 3 dots

In the find and replace box you want to have spacebar spacebar in the “Find” spot and only a single spacebar in the “Replace with” box. Then choose “Replace all.” And boom, like that your document is double space free!
Replace space space with space

Control Shift H

You can go straight to the Find and Replace box with the keyboard shortcut Control Shift H. I have yet to master this keyboard shortcut. I need to FIND which starts with an F so Control F all the double spaces in the document. This I can remember. Can’t seem to mentally connect H with replace and since I find and replace pretty rarely, I tend to stick with Control F and clicking the 3 dots icon. But don’t let me deter you from learning a cool new keyboard shortcut! Give Control Shift H a try!

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